MoneyMagpie

Jun 12

Five ways to save energy in the summer

…eh? Save energy in the summer when we’re all out in the sunshine enjoying ourselves?

Well yes – it doesn’t have to be cold to make us spend money on energy. In fact, if you have air conditioning or even just electric fans you could be using a lot that way. Even our fridges and freezers have to work harder in weather like this.

So here are five ways to cut your costs while the sun blazes (here’s hoping it’s here for a month more at least!):

1. Fill up your fridge

Fridge full of food

Yes, really, it’s actually useful to have the fridge stuffed. Having lots of food in your fridge – such as fresh fruit and vegetables, which we should be eating a lot in the hot weather anyway – keeps it from warming up too fast when the door is open. That way your fridge doesn’t have to work so hard to stay cool. Also, by the way, make sure you open the fridge door as little as possible and close it quickly! 

 

2. Switch off the boiler

Home boiler dials

Your boiler drains the most energy in your home. When you go on holiday, turn it off. It could save you up to £25 a year. Actually, now is also a really good time to replace dodgy boilers so if yours is on its last legs, do it now while the prices are low and plumbers are twiddling their thumbs. If you wait until the cold weather you will pay a lot more to get it done.

 

3. Have showers not baths

Woman showering

This is a nice easy one as who wants a bath in the hot weather? The average household uses most of its hot water for washing themselves. So by switching from a bath to a shower, you can reduce your water heating costs by nearly a third.

 

4. Get insulation and save you up to £145

Home insulation materials

Proper insulation doesn’t just keep your home warm in winter; it also keeps it cool in the hot weather. Get insulation done now and not only will you save on your bills but you’re likely to get the job done cheaper as well as this is another thing that tends to go up in price as the temperature goes down.

 

5. Keep food fresh

Fresh strawberries

The warm humidity of summer is prime real estate for bacteria.

Bread, fruit and veg in particularly can go off very quickly in the warm weather so here are some essential tricks to keep your food fresh for longer and save you money:

Tips For Keeping Fruit & Veg Fresh

Fresh fruit and veg

  1. Wash summer berries in hot water (about 50 degrees) before refrigerating. This kills off mould spores and extends the berries life. After bathing the berries spread them out on a towel to allow them to breathe and then store.
  2. Keep tomatoes OUT of the refrigerator. Cold temperatures rid tomatoes of their flavor and transform their texture in just a couple of days. Instead keep them at room temperature and away from direct sunlight. Put them in a bowl that you have lined with a paper towel with the stems at the top.
  3. Wrap Leafy Greens. The best way to extend the life of salads is to wrap the unwashed leaves in a paper towel, place inside a seal-able plastic bag and kept in a fridge. The towel will absorb any excess moisture which causes greens to rot.
  4. Refresh lettuce and herbs with an ice bath. Rejuvenate wilted leaves by putting them in a large bowl of ice water. Shake and leave for a few minutes for refreshed greens.
  5. Freeze ripened fruit and veg. Chop up ripened fruit and veg and store in bags in your freezer until ready to consume.
  6. Refrigerate ripened bananas. It is a myth that putting bananas in a fridge will make them go bad more quickly. The cool temperature does make the skins blacken more quickly but the fruit underneath is not affected and actually stays fresher for longer.

Tips For keeping bread fresh

Freshly baked bread

  1. Keep it in a cool dry place sealed inside a zip-lock bag. This limits the amount of airborne microbes that come into contact with it and stops it from going stale as quickly.
  2. Don’t buy pre-sliced bread. Pre-sliced bread allows air and bacterian to get in throughout the loaf, which means it will go mouldy and stale more quickly.
  3. Slice into the centre of your bread instead of starting at one of the ends. Then, push the two cut sides together after removing your slices.

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